Number of model schools to increase: official

SHARJAH - Even if the private schools are founded on the principle of financial profits, they should contribute effectively to the national development plan by recruiting nationals as teachers and employees, said Salem Zayed Al Tunaiji, Director of Sharjah Educational Zone.

By Mohsen Rashid

Published: Sat 12 Apr 2003, 7:57 PM

Last updated: Wed 1 Apr 2015, 9:57 PM

The zone is planning to bridge the gap between private school administrations and UAE job seekers by listing the vacancies in schools and finding qualified UAE nationals who are ready to accept the salaries offered by the private institutions.

Mr Tunaiji, in an exclusive interview with Khaleej Times, shared his views on the future of education in Sharjah emirate, which he said will witness a qualitative educational system, effectively leading to a spurt in the number of model schools.

"Unlike the private schools, the model schools are different with instructional and creative objectives as their motto. The idea of the model school is a pioneering step and is supported by His Highness Dr Shaikh Sultan bin Mohammed Al Qasimi, Member of the Supreme Council and Ruler of Sharjah," Mr Tunaiji said.

"To begin with, the number of model schools will increase to four, compared to two at present. The two new schools will also offer preparatory classes and at a later stage it will accommodate the secondary classes," he said.

Mr Tunaiji observed that the expansion of model schools would continue on an annual basis. However, he does not feel that the growth of model schools would be at the expense of private schools.

"Private schools, which had always been seeking profit, should contribute effectively to the national development plan by recruiting local teachers and employees."

He called upon private school managements to hire nationals in administrative, teaching and technical positions.

"The Educational Zone is willing to earmark the applications for vacant posts at private schools including, of course, those submitted by national job seekers, who are content with the working hours and salaries of these schools," he said.

Explaining the difference between the model schools and ordinary public schools, he said that model schools provide a different quality of education in terms of performance and extra-curricular activities.

"The continuous follow-up and coordination between the model schools and the parents reflect positively on the work performance and standard of the students and eventually on the educational output," he observed.

Commenting on the lack of administrative and technical supervision and control on the private education sector, Mr Tunaiji said that the educational zone has a new vision for private schools that would be implemented soon.

He admitted that while the educational zone had supervision over the teaching of some subjects, it needs more instructors to scrutinise the performances of the private schools. "To overcome the shortage of instructors, we are considering a proposal under which private schools would appoint an inspector to calibrate the performance of schools."

The employment of national teachers, administrators and technicians at private schools could be facilitated by a decision by higher authorities or bodies which have the power of taking decision by imposing a quota on the employment of UAE nationals in private schools, Mr Tunaiji said.

"Once this happens, it would be our duty to follow-up the implementation of the decision and to introduce a mechanism for listing the names of candidates for jobs in private schools, conducting interviews with them and engaging them in training courses, he added.

Mr Tunaiji disclosed that the educational zone has mapped out a five-year strategy for the development of the private education sector which had already started with the establishment of the educational development council for private schools.

He said that the educational zone also plans to introduce an electronic link with the private schools which is aimed at facilitating the process of promotion, admission, follow-up and creating a full-fledged database on the employees, their academic qualifications and experiences.

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